Figures of Speech: Sunrise on the Veld

Personification

Having an inanimate object and giving it a human characteristic. The author used these in an attempt to create an image in our heads. The sun painting is an example of personification. While there are many other examples of personification in the story, I like this one most. It creates a vision in our heads of a sunset. Of the liveliness in all the colors that the sun paints on the sky.

 

Paradox

Sleeping but vigilant is an example of a paradox. A paradox is a seemingly absurd or self-contradictory statement or proposition that when investigated or explained may prove to be well founded or true. How can we be vigilant while we sleep. It’s a contradictory statement between something quiet and peaceful. We don’t know what goes on in the world while we doze off into another reality. And something where we need to be attentive in.

 

Irony

An intention or attitude opposite to that which is actually or apparently stated. An example from the story is debating if we should interfere with nature. The boy in the story was going to put the deer out of its misery by shooting it. He thought that was a compassionate thing to do. But it was his gun that did this to the animal in the first place. He shot blindly into the bush and didn’t go look for what he shot. He already interfered with nature.

 

Simile

A comparison between two things using like or as, used to make a description more emphatic or vivid. Felt years in his hands as if counting marbles is the best example of simile from the story. Marbles represent his age. His hands also represent the years of his life.

 

Metaphor

A figure of speech in which a word or phrase is applied to an object or action to which it is not literally applicable. An example from the story is he was a small boy again, kicking sulkily at the skeleton. The metaphor is going back to his younger self. When he was oblivious of the world around him.

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